E-cigarette use in the past and quitting behavior in the future: a population-based study

Am J Public Health. 2015 Jun;105(6):1213-9. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2014.302482. Epub 2015 Apr 16.


Objectives: We examined whether smokers who used e-cigarettes are more likely to quit after 1 year than smokers who had never used e-cigarettes.

Methods: We surveyed California smokers (n = 1000) at 2 time points 1 year apart. We conducted logistic regression analyses to determine whether history of e-cigarette use at baseline predicted quitting behavior at follow-up, adjusting for demographics and smoking behavior at baseline. We limited analyses to smokers who reported consistent e-cigarette behavior at baseline and follow-up.

Results: Compared with smokers who never used e-cigarettes, smokers who ever used e-cigarettes were significantly less likely to decrease cigarette consumption (odds ratio [OR] = 0.51; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.30, 0.87), and significantly less likely to quit for 30 days or more at follow-up (OR = 0.41; 95% CI = 0.18, 0.93). Ever-users of e-cigarettes were more likely to report a quit attempt, although this was not statistically significant (OR = 1.15; 95% CI = 0.67, 1.97).

Conclusions: Smokers who have used e-cigarettes may be at increased risk for not being able to quit smoking. These findings, which need to be confirmed by longer-term cohort studies, have important policy and regulation implications regarding the use of e-cigarettes among smokers.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • California
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems / statistics & numerical data*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Risk
  • Smoking Cessation*